1998 Chevrolet Malibu LS from North America


Expensive before its time


The heater fan went around 35000 km and was replaced under warranty. It went again about 15000kms later and it had just gone off warranty, and I have not had it fixed yet. I continue to drive without levels 1 & 2.

Replaced the driver's side mirror about 20000 km, as it was shaking. Covered under warranty.

Brakes have not been too bad, replaced pads around 50000km, had the rotors ground, but have a feeling that they will need replacing soon, as a vibration is starting to occur on breaking.

Main concern, apart from the heater fan, has to do with the ABS. At 60000 km, had to replace ABS computer component, and 6 months later ABS still a problem.

I have also begin hearing an annoying rattle in the front end drivers side when travelling 20-40 km/hr. It may be suspension related and I have yet to find out that answer.

Tires definitely wear premature and have had to be replaced. The Firestone Affinities were also not very good in snow.

General Comments:

The car has good features, don't get me wrong; but the problems that are being experienced should be recognized by GM and addressed. I will not replace my current Malibu with another.

I think that GM dealers should better inform the public as to the problems that are common to the Malibu (brakes, fan, tires) Prospective buyers and current owners should be made aware of these persistent issues until they are fixed by GM. I would likely not have bought it off lease, and I would have extended my warranty had I known.

My ABS problem may be slightly exceptional, but seems brake related, either that or bearings. I hasten to guess!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 11th June, 2002

5th Aug 2002, 12:53

I swear this review could have been written about my own '98 Malibu! I have had exactly the same problems.

23rd Sep 2002, 15:23

Exactly the same problem with my car... The ABS light at first sometimes went on, now it is on all the time. Also, the fan doesn't work in the 1&2 Position.

16th Jul 2003, 09:13

I have nothing but headaches when it comes to the brakes! Every oil change (I am faithful 3000 miles) I have to get new brake pads, every 6 months I have to buy new rotors, the tires wear wrong because of the brakes. Chevy is very aware of this problem, but refuse to recall the brakes or fix the problem. The issue is that the rotors are made to small and in order for the car to stop the pads take a beating. Now they have come up with a "So Called New" brake pad that is not suppose to wear as fast, these brakes are full of so much crud that they destroy the rotors. It is a no win situation. I am trying to sell mine now, but of course most consumers are aware of the problems and wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole! Lemon lemon lemon.

1998 Chevrolet Malibu Sedan 3.1 SFI V6 from North America


Fun to drive, expensive to own


Brakes pads frequently in need of repair.

Taillights are leaking water.

Driver side marker light shorted out.

Rattle in dashboard.

FM Radio line became disconnected.

A/C control resister died. I'd lost settings 1 and 2 for awhile.

General Comments:

I think GM should've taken responsibility for all the defects that I've had to pay for since I've heard that most of them are common on that model car. Otherwise the Malibu performs very nicely and in my opinion gets good gas mileage.

The seats are very comfortable and people I drive around usually enjoy the ride.

The 3100 SFI V6 that's in it is a speedy little engine which performs wonderfully on the highway. I've also had no engine problems at all with this car in the time I've owned it; which was from 18000 miles up to 79000 and still running.

I think that the FM Radio line could've been placed a little better, but when it is connected and working like it should, the sound quality is awesome.

I'd only buy a new GM if they've made improvements on their cars.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 23rd May, 2002

10th Apr 2007, 08:47

My parents have owned a 1998 Chevy Malibu since about 2001, the cars runs beautifully, and now I'm driving it, the only problems I have ever noticed were simply out of old age, the intake seal was old and worn, the suspension is old and worn, and probably abused at one time or another, other than that it is a great car, it has plenty of power, and comfort. I love the car, and my friends love it, and they never say anything bad about it, instead they brag about it. as for the power it has, well, I have launched it and it has done really well, and surprised many people with how quick and fast it is with its little 3.1L V6. overall I am very satisfied with the Chevrolet Malibu, and so are my friends and family, especially the ones who bought Malibu's because they liked mine so much, it's a great car, and I will continue to drive the Malibu and I'll probably buy another in the future.

10th Apr 2007, 09:10

I forgot to mention, my Malibu is the 3.1L V6, with about 120K miles on it, and still no major problems, and very few minor problems, it is a great car, I've driven other cars, I have friends with other cars, and they all take better care than I do (maintenance) yet they all want my car and some have sold their cars and bought Malibu's. They simply put too much money and time into their previous cars and now they are happy, just as I am, with the Chevy Malibu. No mine is not a 4 cylinder, it is a 3.1L V6 with around 120K miles on it and it still runs better than a lot of newer cars I have seen and worked on.